Fileserver + Seedbox.. what do I need?

Discussion in 'Storage & Backup' started by MdMa, Nov 18, 2010.

  1. MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    So, I am sick of having my PC on 24/7 for torrents, and sick of having to transfer files to various PCs & HTPC's around the house.

    I want to be able to add drives as I need them (Dynamic Growth?)
    Leave it on 24/7 for torrents (FreeNAS has the Transmission client?)
    Have some safety - what if a drive fails? (If I was to do some sort of raid, which should I do, bearing in mind speed is not a primary factor)

    What is the impact if a file is being accessed by two different sources, ie. same movie being watched by two different HTPC's?

    Should I buy a ready to go NAS or build one myself? (I have no problem building PC's)

    Obviously I am a big noob when it comes to this; the only experience I have with RAID was setting up a RAID 0 with Windows XP many years ago for a friend. My only Linux experience was setting up Ubuntu on my HTPC with XBMC, which was only accomplished with a tutorial.
     
  2. oh_noes

    oh_noes Member

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    Sounds like all you need a a cheap Atom build. Cheapest case, 4 SATA ports, FreeNAS, RAID5 over 4 disks and install transmission-daemon on it.
     
  3. Vampire

    Vampire Member

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    4 SATA ports doesnt really leave much room for dynamic growth :p Go a motherboard with 8 ports I'd say, they're cheap.
     
  4. OP
    OP
    MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    What would happen if I only had 4 HDD/SATA ports and wanted to upgrade one of the HDD's in the RAID5 Array, lets say it failed or it was a 1.5TB and I wanted to exchange it with a 2TB...

    Would I loose all the data?
     
  5. miicah

    miicah Member

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    Yes you would definitly loose all your data, you really need to keep data contained as data on the loose can be very dangerous.
     
  6. Primüs

    Primüs Member

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    In a raid 5 array, the hard drives only use as big as your smallest drive, so 1x 500, 2x 1tb, 1x2tb would be 4x 500gb drives (minus one for parity) in the 'array'.

    As drives die you could replace them with bigger drives but it wont make full use of them untill all drives are updated to a bigger size, so i'd start out with the biggest you can get (2TB drives for instance, maybe 3TB if your budget can afford to).

    Or you could go mdadm raid5 with LVM, which means that if you had 3x1TB drives and added a 2TB drive, you could essentially split the 2TB drive into 2x1TB parts, and add both to the raid array, but keep in mind it plays around with your failure rate, since you can only lose one 'drive' at a time, that drive now counts for 2, so if it fails, goodbye data.
     
  7. FatBoyNotSoSlim

    FatBoyNotSoSlim Member

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    Basically, you acn remove a drive, then resych your data to all the drives again. If you do this 4 times to all the drives, you can then expand your array to use the full size of the larger drives. It's a risky thing to do, as whilst it's resyching, if theres an issue, you could loose all the data, but it's more then possible. What's also useful is, if a 1TB drive fails, you can put in a 2TB drive whilst the smaller one is getting RMA'd and the array will run fine (once resynced) and you'll be able to replace the 1TB drive again and resych again.
    Lol. Ever used Raid5 before?
     
  8. bolex17

    bolex17 Member

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    On software side of things.. chuck in freeNAS. Easy to configure and has heaps of features.

    For Bittorent client, if you don't mind mucking around and getting your hands dirty .. install rtorrent + screen + rutorrent gui
    Has heaps of plugins and use crap all memory. :thumbup:

    It looks very similar to uTorrent if you are used to it.

    Click to view full size!
     
  9. OP
    OP
    MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    Interesting stuff, thanks guys.

    Instead of contributing to the thread, miicah thought it would be better to make fun of my incorrect spelling of lose. Sorry for the double "o" miicah.

    Having never set up a sever, how would access/see the drive(s)/files from my PC/HTPC? eg. I downloaded an app via Bitorrent, and want to copy it to my PC?
     
  10. OP
    OP
    MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    Looks exactly like uTorrent, which is much better than Transmission.

    Nice one!
     
  11. bolex17

    bolex17 Member

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    Yep! shoot me a PM if you need assistance setting it up.
     
  12. davros123

    davros123 Member

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    Freenas And other nas systems present drives to Windows on the LAN using samba, which show up on a lan just like any windows shared drive. You will be able to set this up using the gui in freenas in a few minutes.
    (edit:freaking iPad auto correcting text!)
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  13. OP
    OP
    MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    Ah too easy!

    So the next question.. in a RAID5, would there be any noticeable impact if two PC's are accessing the same file? eg. Two people are watching the same movie on different PC's/HTPC's...?
     
  14. saba

    saba Evil Vizier

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    No, since it'll be streamed from the cache in RAM.
     
  15. FranchiseJuan

    FranchiseJuan Member

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    I am going through this same process right now. I decided to go with FreeNas and use ZFS as it is easy to expand the storage pool. I am going to start with the drives I have lying around and then upgrade them as I need more storage.

    I have been using transmission on a Synology NAS for a year now, I quite like it.
     
  16. bolex17

    bolex17 Member

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    On my NAS I sometime have 3 client accessing the same file at once (PS3, Sisters PC, Bittorent Client) all accessing the same file and I don't notice any lag or issue whatsoever.. (Even when streaming 1080p content to the PS3)
     
  17. OP
    OP
    MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    Any reason you went an off the shelf vs building your own, seeing as Synology (DS1010+) is limited to 3GB of RAM?

    I only ask because I thought I read ZFS would ideally like more then 4GB?
     
  18. FranchiseJuan

    FranchiseJuan Member

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    Originally I went with the Synology because I wanted something I did not have to spend time maintaining. It was not too expensive at the time (£150) and I had some drives lying around. It was only a 2 bay unit.

    After using it for a year, I realised the limitations, and when I considered expanding all the 4 or 5 bay units were much much more expensive than building my own box. Currently I am building my own NAS and plan to use FreeNas as the OS.

    I have actually done a test (Case arrives tomorrow so not put it all together yet) and Write speeds are around 40 mbps and read speeds around 65 mbps. This is with only 2gb of ram on a S939 MB with an Athlon 64 1.8 ghz processor (4+ year old components I had lying around). That was using ZFS off 4 1tb drives in RaidZ1.

    Compared that to the Synology NAS which averages 2-4 mbps (you read right 2-4) while running BT, I am happy with the speed increase to say the least.
     
  19. OP
    OP
    MdMa

    MdMa Member

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    I would imagine your using SATA1 (1.5Gbit)?

    How did you live with 2-4 MB/s.. I am loosing the plot with 10 MB/s (10/100Mbit limted) :(
     
  20. FranchiseJuan

    FranchiseJuan Member

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    Yeah I think the board is SATA1. Not too worried about that as it is already a 15-20x increase in speed from what I am using now. The main thing is the ease of upgrade and the data redundancy. Also after selling the Synology NAS I should have only spent about £20 to upgrade my NAS.

    After testing the speed of the new setup two days ago, I am wondering how I lived with 2.4 mb/s as well.
     

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